family · Mind Lovers Misery Menagerie · Word of the Day Challenge

Power & Control


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Today’s Word of the Day Challenge is power.

Today’s Mind Love’s Misery Menagerie asks us to consider the concept of control for Tale Weaver 206.

Miranda had been employed by the hospital for 8 years as an educator on the dynamics of domestic violence (DV.) Her degree was in social work, which is just what the hospital was looking for when hiring staff for their new DV Empowerment Unit. The National Victims Empowerment Development Association (N-VEDA) granted the funds to start a pilot program at the hospital.

Besides the degree, another requirement, for the hospital and for the conditions of the grant, was that all staff had to have “lived experiences” with domestic violence. In other words all of the workers either had to have been victims of DV directly or had grown up in homes where DV was present.

Miranda was doubly qualified in that she grew up in a home where her grandfather ruled all of the family members with his fists, which included Miranda’s grandmother, mother, two olders sisters, and her younger brother; as well as having gotten immediately into a DV situation with her first serious boyfriend when she moved away from home for college. Luckily she survived both circumstances. Even more blessed was that she was being educated for her social work degree and wrote her Master’s Thesis on the intergenerational transmission of DV.

Miranda was intelligent, motivated, and had the initiative to develop the program into being one of the top programs in the country. The N-VEDA was so impressed they renewed the grant without much overview every 3 years. Miranda was asked to make presentations across the United States on how to develop similar programs.

The program was based on the Power and Control Wheel that was designed as part of the Duluth Model, an earlier pilot program on DV. It broke each one of the pieces of the pie down into digestible lessons and focused on having the victims teach their family members with a workbook, as well as role plays and role reversals.

Although often forced by the demands of her talents and work duties to be in the spotlight with lectures, podcasts, television appearances, and guest professorships, Miranda kept a very private and low profile when it came to her personal life. She didn’t socialize after work with colleagues when she was in town, and she went directly to her hotel room when she was out of town. Everyone knew she had been married before but nobody knew who her husband was or what he did or where he was now.

When Oprah invited Miranda to be a guest on her show, then also offered to give her a $2million advance on a television series that gave fictionalized scenarios of empowerment in action, Miranda was ecstatic. She was finally reaching the pinnacle of her career and was soaring high.  She would reach millions of victims!

The live taping in Chicago was in the middle of summer. The studio audience was a full house. Miranda’s segment with Oprah was flawless until the Q & A time came. A hand shot up in the nosebleed section of the audience. The cameras zoomed in on an extremely attractive middle-aged man. The question the man asked was this:

Why would a person who is known as the Goddess of Victim Empowerment keep her husband chained in the basement during their marriage?

22 thoughts on “Power & Control

  1. A woman is as capable of being a monster as a man; a mother isn’t necessarily maternal; people who are abused often end up perpetrating abuse (and even hiding it or hiding behind the mask of ‘victim’) … the other side: the man in the crowd could be lying, waiting for just the right moment to trash a decent human being; he could be a monster who likes to behave like a bloodhound while tracking and a skunk when he finds his prey – just as long as the spray goes far and wide.
    The thing is, we can’t ever take a person at face value; what they look like, what they say, is not who they are – what a person does in their lives is what counts, what shows their true inner self.
    In this case, I’d take the man to task for wanting to air it in a public place, but if a woman did that, I’d think she did it for protection of the crowd …
    Every person has a mask – some are to protect themselves, some are for other purposes.
    I trust my dog.

    has that gone too far? Sorry.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. No no no no no never too far. I thought about the aspect of how he was controlling her when he said it. We don’t know what the context of that “chaining in the basement” was if it was true. Let’s face it, adults can get into some kinky CONSENSUAL situations, and even though that would be a little concerning especially in light of her icon of victim empowerment status, her own business. My thought on it was he heard about the money she was going to get and decided to act in a way that would get him the money instead (talking to the media, selling his story, book deals, etc.)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. that would be a thought.
    I bring my own prejudices/perceptions – my mother is a manipulator, and she’s a master player. I’ve had people phone me in the middle of the night abusing me for my treatment of her (haven’t spoken to her for more than 20 years) and stealing her pension (?). they don’t want to hear my side, ever, and wouldn’t believe me anyway. they want to save her (at least until she’s taken all their money and are of no further use/value). I want to stay away from her – but I’ve learned from her: how to recognise how the power-mongers manipulate situations and people to get the attention they seek.
    And then from my foster kids I learned how to see more than the first face of a situation – how the masks presented can be one of many, many sides, and not just one or two.

    It always comes down to a simple adage: Discourse creates and shapes perception.

    But abuse is not acceptable. It may start out as something to overlook, a tiny infraction, but look at what it may build to … and even though we see more of how men overpower and damage the females in their lives, we all need to look beyond the presentation to see what may lie beneath the veneer …
    I would probably still stand with the woman, because she is making the right actions to help other women stand strong – and that counts! She’s doing things, she keeps doing those things, and she’s excited about being able to continue doing those things.
    My money is on him being a grubber.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I hate to say I’m glad you have problems with your mom, but any time I am aware of someone who doesn’t have a mother that walks on water I feel a certain validation in my conflicted relationship with my mom. Re the story: My money is on his being a grubber also 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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